Andes: Urban Panorama #4
2-plate reduction woodcut
16" x 20", paper 20" x 24"
edition of 12
I work as a painter and printmaker and my art has been focused on the landscape. Recently this has included buildings set into landscapes. My eye is drawn to the bold colors and simple block forms of many of the homes I’ve encountered on my travels. The layers of paint, terra-cotta tiles, wood, and concrete, layer upon layer, cascading down hills, and snaking along valleys has become the landscape. I want to simplify these shapes, creating strong images that are both abstract and naturalistic.
I love the discipline of the reduction relief printmaking process (also known as the “suicide print”) and the surprises which come with each layering of color. The physicality of carving woodblocks, rolling ink, and the repetition of printing become meditative. Each print has from 10 to 25 colors, in opaque and transparent form, and acquires a physicality of layers.
Cynthia Back was born in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A. and currently resides in Portugal. Cynthia earned a BFA at Minneapolis College of Art and Design and a post-graduate certificate at St. Martin’s School of Art in London, England. Cynthia has exhibited widely both in the U.S. and internationally. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including grants from the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation, Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation, Puffin Foundation, Pollock-Krasner Foundation; residencies and fellowships to Galleri Heike Arndt, Kettinge, Denmark, The Studios at Key West,The Artists Centre Dale, Norway, The Women’s Studio Workshop, Blue Mountain Center, Acadia National Park, The Ballinglen Arts Foundation Ltd., Ireland, Fundacion Valparaiso, Spain, Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, The Cill Rialaig Project, Ireland, and The MacDowell Colony. Her work is included in private and corporate collections including The Library of Congress, the New York Public Library, the Newark Public Library, the Free Library of Philadelphia, The New-York Historical Society, and The Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.